Moderator Resources

The Moderator Manual provides useful information for all moderators of Freecycle Town groups. New to moderating? Need a refresher? Check out our New Moderator Orientation page

Guidelines and policies

Everything on Freecycle.org must be free, legal, and appropriate for all ages. Click here for a refresher on what is not allowed on Freecycle.

Local moderator decisions

  • Beyond the basics mentioned above, moderators may set local policies on whether to allow certain types of posts. Mods may also decide whether or not to approve members, have new members on moderation, and use certain hotwords to trigger post moderation. Click here for more information
  • As a general rule, the more freedom we can give the members the better. As a moderator your job is to make sure things are free, legal, and appropriate to all ages.

Required files

Moderators are asked to send all new Town group members a welcome file with the Guidelines and Disclaimer upon joining the group. Feel free to use this Welcome File which includes the Guidelines and Disclaimer and a link to the FAQs. If you have any special local policies for your Town group beyond the ones in the required guidelines, you can add those also. Click here for information on how to automatically send a welcome file.

Problems, solutions, and suggestions

How to get help

Member questions

How to use the mod tools

FC3 Modtools are under development. Full instructions for using legacy modtools are here: https://wiki.freecycle.org/How_To_Use_Mod_Tools

Technical problems

Common situations encountered by moderators

Communicating with members

  • Sending messages to members. There are two ways to send a message to a member:
    1. Use your personal email address. Many mod teams create a generic email address for the mod team to share.
    2. Use Mod Tools to send an email without revealing your personal email address
  • Receiving messages from members. There is a link on My Towns page that members can use to contact the mod team. However, you may need to send out something that you want members to reply to, for example a request for volunteers. In that case you will need to ask members to reply at /home/my-replies/#contact-a-moderator.
  • As an important anti-spam safeguard, never publicly display your ModTeam @mod email address or include it on notices that go out to members.

Moderator discussion groups

Promoting and building your group

Copyright and trademark information

Because The Freecycle Network at Freecycle.org is unique and amazingly successful, there are many who have and who would try to use it for personal gain and profit. For that reason:

  • The Freecycle Network is incorporated as a non-profit organization.
  • The Freecycle.org logo is trademark protected.

As Moderators, we have an essential role to play in protecting the Freecycle.org trademark so we don't lose it. These are the key points:

Copyright and trademark information is explained fully here.

Freecycle Privacy Policy

The European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) strengthens data protection for all members of Freecycle.org. Members may request that all traces of their data be deleted from Freecycle's computers. Please refer members to Freecycle's privacy policy for more information.

Note: The footer of every page of the site includes links to Freecycle Guidelines, Trademark Guidelines. Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service.

More links and resources

  • Mod Manual Page List.. Not finding what you're looking for? Search the Page List
  • Glossary. We admit it, we abbreviate everything. Click here for a full glossary
  • Org chart and leadership team. Most members think of The Freecycle Network as being a community resource, but it is actually a large, global organization with more than 5,200 Freecycle.org groups in over 110 countries. See the Org Chart and Leadership team for more information about the basic structure of The Freecycle Network. 
  • Volunteer. The Freecycle Network is always on the lookout for people who can help with all of the behind-the-scenes work that is needed to keep everything running smoothly. If you have any spare time or special skills you would like to offer, please see this link for more information.

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